Friday, May 7, 2010

A Letter… {part 2}

In February, I wrote a letter to my father. This is a different sort of letter. A letter to the woman I am so proud to call my mom.

Dear Mom,

If I ever needed to know what unconditional love looked like, I only have to look at you. You have shown me complete, unconditional love from day one. You are one of the strongest women I know, and I hate that you don’t see yourself this way. Because you are. There’s nobody in the world could have gone through the circumstances you have gone through and emerged out as such a winner.

Growing up, it was tough living with you and Dad. The fights were intense and frequent. I remember watching Dad hold a knife to your throat when I was just a child. I remember thinking, “Mom, please stop!” when you continued to fight with him, but then so proud that you could hold your own. I remember walking on eggshells around Dad and feeling the wrath of his anger. I remember the sweet relief I felt when you sat me down one night when I was in fifth grade and told me we were leaving my father.

Leaving your husband of almost 13 years was no easy feat. You had to become a single mom to a 12-year-old sullen boy and a 11-year-old scared-of-her-own-shadow girl. You had to move back in with your parents. There was nothing easy about what you did, but it was necessary. “I didn’t want your brother and you to see our relationship and think this is how a marriage looks like,” is what you say to this day of why you left my father. It didn’t just show me that, it also showed me what it means to be a strong woman.

We weren’t always good friends. I wrote “I hate my mom” on my dresser in middle school. I was embarrassed to walk around in the mall with you. I thought you were old-fashioned with your Christian values.

But now you are my best friend. You are someone I go to for all my problems. We have our moments of utter silliness where we giggle like we’re in middle school. We have our moments of extreme seriousness where we talk about our problems. And we have our quiet moments where we just sit in complete, comfortable silence.

You have supported me every step of the way: through my awful education internships, losing weight, my decision to switch my major, some terrible jobs, and you were there to pick up the pieces every single time my father broke my heart. I know I can talk to you about any problem and concern I may have and you will listen.

We have been through a lot together. I was with you as you lost 80 pounds. I was with you when you left my dad for the final time. I was with you as you struggled with extreme depression, after leaving my father.

You are an amazing woman. You raised two amazing kids on a limited budget. While Mark and I never got a car for our 16th birthdays, we received more in love and support from you than a car could ever give. You taught us about responsibility, courage, and honesty. You taught us about forgiveness as you sent us off to my father’s house every other weekend, knowing he was going to spend the majority of the time bashing you. You have taught me about love, a selfless love, that keeps on giving and never grows weary.

I am so glad to be your daughter. While I may have bombed in the dad department, I got the pot of gold in the mom department. You are amazing, beautiful, and so much fun to be with. I love you, Mom.

Love,
Stephany

17 comments:

  1. Awww this is beautiful. You've inspired me to write one to my Dad (especially as it's his birthday in a few weeks!) :)

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  2. Beautiful. I can't imagine a better gift for a mother than a letter like this one.

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  3. No other word to describe this letter other than - beautiful! I just know it's going to touch your mom's heart. And as it was said before me, I don't think there is a gift out there that would be better. :)

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  4. That's an amazing letter. Your mom is going to cherish that.

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  6. I sat here and I cried. I cried reading this letter because I know how much of it has the same feelings that I have towards my mom. She is one of the strongest people I know and I love her so much. I think I'm going to write a similar note to my mom today. Thank you again, and this was such a great way to be introduced to your blog.

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  7. Beautiful post. Seriously teared up. You are an amazing, lucky girl to have a wonderful mom who loves you and has dedicated everything she's had to making sure your life was good, and that you grew up to be a great woman.

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  8. This is beautiful. You should write one on paper, put it in an envelope, and put it in your mailbox addressed to your mom for her to find on Mother's Day. I'm sure she would love love love it.

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  9. Awww! Great letter Steph! Happy Mother's Day to your momma.

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  10. This is lovely, Stephany. I was so moved. I come from a similar situation—my mother is a single parent, and I hope that one day I can have the courage to write her such a letter.

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  11. So beautifully sweet! Have a great weekend.

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  12. This is beautiful. Sounds like you have an amazing mother, friend, and role model. I remember feeling embarrassed of my mom around the same age. Oh how we learn. I suppose it helps us realize when our kids do it to us it's just a phase. What a great way to honor your mom before Mother's Day. It sounds like you two have been through a lot together. I'm glad you have one another!

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  13. That is a wonderful gesture, I know that your mom will love it. You are so lucky to have an amazing mom in your life and she is lucky to have you. Happy mom's day to your mom!

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  14. Laurie Reihing5/9/10, 6:51 AM

    Stephany,

    I count it an honor to be your mother. I love every moment of it.. For everything I did wrong being a mother to you and Mark is the one thing I can say I did right.I love the close relationship we have. I am so proud of the young woman you have become. Thank you so much for that sweet letter. As I have said before you have a real gift for writing. I will treasure your words. I love you bunches.
    Love,
    Mommy

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  15. What an honest and beautiful post. You and your mom are so cute :)

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  16. Very beautiful letter.

    It's funny how all girls go through that teenage phase of hating mom...eek! Shows we knew nothing. I think my mom is brilliant, now, as well :)

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  17. Beautifully written! It's nice that we're able to appreciate our parents more now that we're older. I know we're probably going to go through this when we're parents.

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